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Register Now: Pushing the Envelope in Education: New Roles for Libraries — MOOCs, eLearning & Gamification Symposium

Jane Dysart and I are continuing are iSchool at Toronto Symposium series after our successful Makerspace Symposium in July.  This one coming up soon is about exploring the new opportunities in e-learning and moving our library strategies to a new plateau beyond just supporting learning activities but actually offering full courses.  If you’re considering this you won’t want to miss this 2-day symposium.   Registration is open and discounts are available for OLA and FOPL members.

Following the University of Toronto iSchool Institute’s first, and very successful, symposium, Creative Making in Libraries & Museums (check out the speakers and presentations at, we are pleased to introduce the second symposium!

Pushing the Envelope in Education: New Roles for Libraries — MOOCs, eLearning & Gamification

September 30/October 1

Libraries are expanding their strategies in education and learning.  Some public libraries are offering online credit courses and certificates.  Some are offering credit recovery for high school drop-outs.  Many are expanding the economic vitality and capacity of their communities.  Things a re changing.  Some academic libraries are exploring the role of the library in MOOCs and e-learning and distance education.  And our schools for the professional education of  librarians are diving into free MOOCs for continuing education.  Is your library system considering and exploring these innovations and opportunities?

Massive open online courses, or MOOCs, are a new type of college class based on Internet lecture videos. As the New Yorker magazine says, “a MOOC is “massive” because it’s designed to enroll tens of thousands of students. It’s “open” because, in theory, anybody with an Internet connection can sign up. “Online” refers not just to the delivery mode but to the style of communication: much, if not all, of it is on the Web. And “course,” of course, means that assessment is involved—assignments, tests, an ultimate credential. When you take moocs, you’re expected to keep pace. Your work gets regular evaluation. In the end, you’ll pass or fail or, like the vast majority of enrollees, just stop showing up.”

In the past two years, Harvard, M.I.T., Caltech, and the University of Texas have together pledged tens of millions of dollars to mooc development. Many other schools, from U.C. Berkeley to Princeton, have similarly climbed aboard. But how are the students supported?

This two day event features speakers immersed in MOOCs as well as those struggling to create strategies for their academic, college, school and public libraries to support students who are learning more and more online and faculty who are faced with new ways of teaching and assessing students.

Keep your eye on the website updates, speakers and agenda!

University of Toronto, Faculty of Information, iSchool Institute
140 St George Street, 7th Floor, Toronto, ON (map)

Conference Co-Chairs:

·         Jane Dysart, Senior Partner, Dysart & Jones

·         Stephen Abram, Consultant, Dysart & Jones                  ,

For sponsorship opportunities or a chance to demonstrate technology please contact:  Juanita Richardson, [email protected]

Jane Dysart
Senior Partner
Dysart & Jones Associates

[email protected]
twitter & skype: jdysart

Attendees had this to say about our first on Creative Making in Libraries (

“This symposium had some of the best overall content of any conference I’ve attended, including big ones like OLA, PLA, ALA, etc.”

“Enjoyed the mix of in person, multimedia, skype.” “Great mix.”  “The variety added to the ability to maintain attention – you got it right.”

“Choice of speakers was outstanding.”  “They all excelled.”

“All speakers were on subject and brought experience and expertise.  Good spotlight on the tools so we can make decisions about our own spaces.”

“All the speakers were inspiring and informative.  This symposium make me think about creative making in a deeper way and gave me ideas about how libraries can be leaders in providing access to creative making spaces, instruction, events, etc.  I loved Chattanooga PL’s 4th floor culture, the energy they put into their events.  Fayetteville PL’s call for libraries to ‘just be relevant’ is also amazing – I believe that organizational culture eats planning for breakfast and it is inspirational to see how these libraries operate.”

“I really liked getting insight from organizations outside of libraries as well as libraries of different types – hearing about the successful things they are doing.”

University of Toronto, Faculty of Information, iSchool Institute
140 St George Street, 7th Floor, Toronto, ON (map)


Looking forward to seeing you there!



Posted on: September 7, 2013, 12:00 pm Category: Uncategorized